Volunteer helpers put pen to paper

A community group launched three years ago to help local people is about to publish its second book.

Chapter and Verse was set up with the simple aim of helping Eastwood people – whether it was funding for a wheelchair ramp or community transport for pensioners to get out and about.

The group said there were so many stories to tell about Eastwood people and their families, that they had to write a book.

And it was so successful, they are now about to publish their second.

David Page, of Nottingham Road, said: “We had such a demand from people who wanted to be involved in the first one, that we thought we had to do another one.

“We sold 100 copies of the first one in Eastwood alone in just one month.

The first book, which group author David Page likes to describe as an ‘Eastwood digest’ was about the town’s community groups, the history of DH Lawrence and why Eastwood is such a good place to visit.

It is now being sold on Amazon.

The group began writing the second book earlier this year, and have dedicated it to Sol Davis – the only remaining miner living in Eastwood.

“We went round to his house at The Buildings, or Princes Street as it is now known,” said David.

“I have interviewed more than 50 families altogether - sportsmen, councillors, all sorts.”

“There’s so many people featured in this latest book that we expect to sell about 400 copies locally.”

The groups sells their books at cost price, making no profit.

Chapter and Verse is made up of Brian Fretwell and Joy Melbourne, who do the community work and research for the books, and David Page, who is the author.

David, 73, said: “We felt there was a need for a dedicated community-based group.

“The aim was to assist the community filling in the gaps that ordinary services could not provide.

“Brian and Helen visit nursing homes in the area every week, checking up on the elderly and giving them some friendship.

“They call on various people having problems and try to help them out.

“Where Broxtowe Borough Council can’t provide hedge cutting services for example, Brian will do it himself, or at least organise for it to be done.”

Brian, of Dawson Close, came to the rescue of one man who had just come out of hospital and had not been provided with all the necessary equipment he needed to get about.

David said: “He came out in a wheelchair. He called on Red Cross to help provide him with a ramp to get in and out the house but they couldn’t provide the specialist device he needed to get over the doorstep and onto the ramp.

“They said it would be a six month wait. He would have had to have been in his house all summer.

“So Brian went and brought this piece of equipment for him out of his own pocket so he could sit out in his front garden in the sunshine.”